Citgo Credit Card: Is It Hurting America?

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Citgo Credit Card: Is It Hurting America?

Postby CreditCardGuru » Sun Mar 17, 2013 12:37 am

Since Citgo is such a huge gas chain, it comes as no surprise that they have a Citgo credit card. But before you apply, know what you’re getting yourself into…

pumping gas holding hand full of hundreds
CITGO Rewards Card
For 2013 this is the only card they offer. Here's how it works:
  • You can only use it at their stations (it's NOT a major card)
  • The card is managed/issued by Citi
  • 24.99% interest rate
  • 5 cent off per gallon (please note that's cents, not percent)
Verdict? This is a pretty lousy offer when gas costs $4 per gallon. Saving 5 cents on $4 fuel is only 1.25%.

Best Alternative? Regardless of what your credit score is, I would recommend at least trying out this tool to see if you might be pre-selected for something better.

You already know Citgo is one of the largest oil refiners in the world, but what you might not know is that the company is owned by the country of Venezuela, whom has state-owned industries. Since they’re so closely linked with the late President Hugo Chavez and his regime (whom reportedly greatly dislikes our country) many loyal Americans say we should boycott this gas station and some go so far as to allege it's actually hurting America.

But that's a whole other issue. How about we just ask whether the Citgo credit cards are hurting your wallet?

Note: As of 2013 the only card CITGO offers is the one mentioned atop. The others (below) have been discontinued. I will keep the info up though for reference.

CITGO Plus (discontinued)
This is their most basic credit card. It is your typical gas station charge card (it can only be used at Citgo locations). So other than buying gas or a bag of chips at their station, the card is basically useless.

It has no annual fee but the APR is left to be desired… a staggering 24.99% APR at the time of this credit card review. Furthermore, it’s a variable rate card so it will only go up with the prime rate.

Verdict: An outrageous APR and no gas rewards? Skip this one!

CITGO Celebrity (discontinued)
Their ad says you will “feel like a celebrity” with this card… yeah right!

The card is not associated with Visa, Discover, etc. so like the card above, this one can only be used for purchases from Citgo. It charges an annual fee of $29.00, which is pretty ridiculous considering the so-called “benefits” offered, which are a lot of the same things any old credit card will give you.

It apparently offers no rewards on gas purchases. Instead they try and lure you in with trivial rebates on travel, but only if you buy the travel through their service!

Verdict: You have to pay an annual fee and you still don’t get a gas rebate? Look elsewhere!

Citi Platinum Select CITGO MasterCard or Visa (discontinued)
This was the best Citgo credit card because it was associated with Visa or MasterCard, so it could be used for purchases at their station and elsewhere.

With no annual fee and up to a 4% fuel rebate at Citgo stations, this was their most attractive offer. But guess what? It has now been discontinued.

At the beginning of 2012, Citibank sent out a letter to Citgo Visa card and MasterCard accountholders, informing them they would be discontinued. For alteranatives, here are some other gas cards that give 2-5% rebates.

no Citgo gas sign
One of the things that many former cardholders will say good riddance to is the confusing part of the program about which stations qualify. In the fine print of the application it had said that the 4% rebate didn't apply to the stations that sell non-Citgo branded gasoline.

I found that extremely confusing because how are we supposed to know whether or not an independently owned Citgo station is selling Citgo branded gas or not? To make matters worse, if rebates were not redeemed within 6 monthly billing cycles, they will expire… that’s an awfully short redemption period.

Speaking of major credit cards branded by gas stations, they may be going the way of the dinosaurs. It's interesting to note that during the past year, the Phillips 66 and Marathon credit cards were also axed. Now you can no longer get a Visa or MasterCard from them. So I'm not surprised that the Citgo gas card went to the chopping block too. After all, if you're going to get a major credit card, you might as well get one that offers a rebate at all gas stations, right?


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